Trackspeed Porsche drivers David Ashburn and Glynn Geddie continued their rampant run of form stealing the win in the British GT Championship's two-hour Silverstone endure with a late move.
Geddie took the lead from the Paul Warren in one of the Chad Racing Ferrari 430 Scuderia just ten laps away from the eventual of 60, then survived the shuffling to the top ten behind him to add another victory to the pair they scored in the previous round at Rockingham. The twenty points awarded for winning the race – double the length of the usual British GT contests moves Ashburn into a clear lead over Geddie, who joins MTECH drivers Duncan Cameron and Matt Griffin in a tie for second place in the championship.
Tom Ferrier, who shared the car with Warren led much of the early running in the race, challenged first by Stuart Hall in the Vantage Racing prepared Aston Martin DBRS9, then a charging Martin Short who had fought up from starting 14th to second, a place he lucked into as Hall spun the Aston Martin ahead of him.
However, not even the Mosler/Short combination could peg back Ferrier, who pulled out a 20-second lead, by the time the window for driver changes was flung open, allowing teams to swap to their second drivers, changing the nature of the race.
Naturally, it was those teams who had a faster driver waiting in the wings (or the garage, more accurately) who opted to be the first ones to the window. The first visitor was Philip Walker, driving the second Trackspeed car. He had started from pole, though had fallen back down the field to the fringes of the top ten before he gave way to international Porsche driver Richard Westbrook.
With Westbrook and Geddie installed in their respective Porsches the stage was set for a fight in the second half of the race. They were joined in their charge through the field by Darren Turner – another international name included in the impressive 25 car grid – in the Barwell-Beechdean Aston Martin, and Allan Simonsen in the Rosso Verde Ferrari, he and teammate Hector Lester having missed the rounds at Rockingham.
The quartet began to effect a changing of the guard chasing down the three crews who had led before, through and after the stops. Warren now held a lead of nearly 30 seconds over the Rollcentre Mosler, now driven by Adrian Beer, with the Jones brother's Ascari running in third.
It was David Jones in the Preci-Spark backed car who was the first to lose out to Geddie for third before the Porsche man was presented with second when Beer spun the Mosler out of contention, destined to finish a frustrated twelfth.
Then the race was on to hunt down the dominant Chad entry, the decisive pass coming ten laps from home, as Warren's Ferrari began to fade badly, falling to eleventh by race's end.
On most other days Geddie's pass may have been the final action, but with Westbrook, Turner and Simonsen still charging battles continued all the way to the checkered flag.
Westbrook took second from Turner, the Aston threatening to fade with tyre degredation in the closing lap, and fell in behind Geddie, a dutiful tail gunner protecting the championship challengers at the head of the field.
However, Simonsen found a way through the defences into second, though the Dane was unable to pass the second Porsche, his challenge fall only two seconds short after 120 minutes of competition. Westbrook's third became fourth as the Porsche, running on fumes, was re-passed by Darren Turner, giving driving partner Andrew Howard a podium on his return to the series.
Alex Mortimer and Peter Bamford finished sixth in the Team RPM Ford GT, Steven Kane sixth in the Chad Ferrari started by Iain Dockerill, Kane another of the drivers to launch a fight back in the second half of the race having begun his stint last among the GT3 runners.
The Jones Ascari was seventh ahead of three Ferraris – the Phil Burton/Adam Wilcox Predator entry, the STP-liveried Chad entry of Chris Hyman and Dan Brown and the MTECH car of Griffin and Cameron in tenth after suffering a variety of maladies, from a wheelnut problem in the pitstop as well as suspected gearbox and damper issues.
The G4 class, also boosted by new entries was no less dramatic.
In a three way fight the ABG Motorsport KTM X-Bow battled the Century Motorsport Ginetta of Freddie and Benji Hetherington and the United Autosports car, driven by Rob Bell, and younger brother Matt.
The Bell effort appeared to have been flawed by its own quality, officials giving it a 45-second penalty for running drivers adjudged to be platinum and silver rated – the elder Bell a Le Mans Series regular, while Matt races for United in the FIA GT3 series.
However, penalties handed to both their rivals – the KTM for a refuelling error, and the Hetherington's after a member of their pitcrew had their visor open during the same process. The brothers woes were then compounded when the team picked up a second penalty for an infringement during the penalty stop, then Benji missed the red light at pit lane exit, resulting in their disqualification.
Their removal from the standings resulted in an easy victory for the Bells over the Stark Racing Ginetta, beating the Paul Marsh and Ian Stinton piloted car by a lap. The Chad Racing KTM of Athanasios Ladas and Kevin Veltman in third.